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Schiit Modi+ DAC Review

Rate this DAC:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 4 1.7%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 9 3.8%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther

    Votes: 144 60.8%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 80 33.8%

  • Total voters
    237

dtaylo1066

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Being relatively inexpensive, the components—certainly not made in USA—represent a significant part of the final cost and disqualify the Modi+ from a “Made in USA” tag. Schiit would have to increase the price considerably in order to label it “Made in USA”…:facepalm:

I would think it near impossible to build a low cost audio product -- or one at virtually any cost -- with 100% of its resistors, caps, DAC chips, etc, that were all made in the USA.
 

respice finem

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I would think it near impossible to build a low cost audio product -- or one at virtually any cost -- with 100% of its resistors, caps, DAC chips, etc, that were all made in the USA.
I doubt it would be possible at any cost ATM. Globalization, the country with the lowest cost gets the factory...
 

T.M.Noble

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In regards to the production of our units in the USA and "Made in USA" vs "Assembled in USA":

All of the constituent parts of our units are sourced from American companies whenever possible. Our board houses and metal vendors are located in the US which constitutes a large portion of the cost of the unit. However, since the Trump administration, the regulations on using the term "Made in USA" was redefined as strictly as possible. Not only did you need to source your products from American companies, but those companies needed to source the raw materials from the USA as well. Generally speaking, you will very rarely nowadays see a product as complicated as our amps and DAC's that have the Made in USA label. However, we set a particular price point we want to hit for a product. We then price it out with as many USA components we can, and look elsewhere when we must. Still designed in the USA, still assembled in the USA by employees with healthcare, life insurance, PTO, paid holidays, etc.

We hit our target price because we make a point to do it. We don't simply seek out the cheapest possible market to build our product. It's our choice to do it here. That's how you make a cheap product in the US, you just do it.
 
OP
amirm

amirm

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I believe Schiit is the only American company able to produce these DACs with metal case at competitive prices relative to far east companies. The fact that they can do this is quite remarkable.
 

Joe Smith

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It's weird about the filter in this model. I looked back at the Modi 3+ review, and that filter curve looked much better. I have the older Modi 3, hopefully it is same as the 3+ or close.

I think it's odd they did not increase spec to be able to reach sample rate of 36/192 like the JDS Atom+ DAC...
 

GPJ

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I don't think anyone would question the Modi+ based on it's ability to transparently pass audio to an amplifier. It will do that job perfectly great.

Where this device excels is hooked to a PC or other device with a display to obtain feedback about what the DAC is doing. I am assuming the driver provides that info?

An external USB DAC such as Modi+ wipes the floor with any soundcard that resides inside a noisy PC case.
 
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amirm

amirm

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I think it's odd they did not increase spec to be able to reach sample rate of 36/192 like the JDS Atom+ DAC...
Bit depth beyond 24 bits is not usable so there is no reason to ask for 32 bits.
 
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amirm

amirm

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Where this device excels is hooked to a PC or other device with a display to obtain feedback about what the DAC is doing. I am assuming the driver provides that info?
There is no driver. It uses the class drivers in Windows/Mac so that information is not available. Your player is however in control and you can look there for sample rate, etc. Volume control can be before it in software or after it in a pre-amp.
 

dtaylo1066

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I believe Schiit is the only American company able to produce these DACs with metal case at competitive prices relative to far east companies. The fact that they can do this is quite remarkable.
Indeed it is! And I commend them on their production model. And their products seem to be measuring better today than in some past incidents. Overall, that's some good Schiit.
 

Doodski

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Indeed it is! And I commend them on their production model. And their products seem to be measuring better today than in some past incidents. Overall, that's some good Schiit.
Schiit has been testing well at ASR for a fairly long period of time. Perhaps ~3 years maybe. Maybe a little more. Upon the horrible after sales customer service that Topping has provided I realized that Topping is not for me and I bought a Schiit Heresy headphone amp. It just works and hides behind the monitor in the dusty zone where I don't have to see it.
 
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hucifer

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Agreed, I'd much rather get this than any Topping unit.

The audible differences will be slight-to-non-existent, plus you are assured much better customer service if anything should go wrong.
 

Doodski

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Agreed, I'd much rather get this than any Topping unit.

The audible differences will be slight-to-non-existent, plus you are assured much better customer service if anything should go wrong.
I ordered a Schiit Heresy and a JDS Labs Atom DAC+ and they both arrived in Canada at my door within 4 days. :D
 
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confucius_zero

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PeteL

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jds managed to out-perform this?
Ok, maybe, It's just a totally different scale in their offer. Schiit have like 50 different audio products of all kind, JDS like 3, when talking about relevance as a company I am more referring to this not if one has a better filter than the other, their importance, their place in the ecosystem, as a brand. That said I may have been a bit exaggerating. Nad/Bluesound for example is probably an other North American relevant brand.
 

don'ttrustauthority

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The specs are different probably because Amir doesn't weigh his machine measurements for the human ear ... distortion at lower treble is more important that disotrtion at bass frequencies and Schiit corrects for this ... Amir does not.

It is not how humans hear sound.
 

don'ttrustauthority

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Being relatively inexpensive, the components—certainly not made in USA—represent a significant part of the final cost and disqualify the Modi+ from a “Made in USA” tag. Schiit would have to increase the price considerably in order to label it “Made in USA”…:facepalm:
The standard is "all or virtually all" components must be Made in USA. The power brick is made overseas and that is enough to disqualify Schiit from the Made in USA designation.

Is a power brick a "significant part of the final cost"?

No. Schiit is in fact made in USA. It just doesn't qualify for the designation. But it is made here.
A bunch of the limits this thing hits have already been discussed though, just comparing with something like the E70 should highlight notable changes like better SNR/SINAD as well as DR, slightly better jitter and multitone, filter choices with much better attenuation, intermodulation distortion.. The THD+N measurement here especially shows things being rather leaky.

For the $100-$150 dollar range though? It's definitely good performing.
I just don't see how the differences at -112 sinad are audible. Why is it better if human's can't hear it? Will you claim -180 is worse than -190 too?
 
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